TSPSC exam question paper leak: Assistant Section Officer and two candidates among nine detained

Investigation reveals data breach, theft and leak of Assistant Engineer (AE) question paper; suspects also linked to Town Planning Building Overseer paper leak
Representative image | Pic: Express
Representative image | Pic: Express

On Monday, March 13, police took nine individuals into custody in connection with the alleged leak of a Telangana State Public Service Commission (TSPSC) exam question paper. According to officials, those detained include an Assistant Section Officer within TSPSC and two candidates who purchased the leaked paper and took the exam on March 5.

An investigation by the police has revealed that the suspects involved in a paper leak for the position of Town Planning Building Overseer on March 12 were also responsible for a data breach, theft and leak of the Assistant Engineer (AE) question paper for which the exam had taken place on March 5. The TSPSC had postponed the written examination for the Town Planning Building Overseer position on March 12 due to suspected hacking and filed a complaint at Begum Bazaar police station stated a report by PTI.

As the investigation progressed, police discovered that an Assistant Section Officer at TSPSC had conspired with an outsourced network administrator from the same office to leak the TSPSC's Assistant Engineer (AE) question paper. Together, they hacked the password of the confidential section's computer located in the TSPSC office, extracted the data, and transferred it onto a pen drive. They took a printout of the AE (Civil) examination paper and handed it over to other accused and got Rs 10 lakh, police said.

According to the police, the remaining suspects sold the leaked paper to a pair of AE (Civil) Exam candidates, receiving Rs. 13.5 lakh from them in exchange for the compromised question paper. The accused allegedly held the two candidates against their will at their residence and then escorted them to the examination centre on March 5. When questioned about the suspected leak of the paper for the Town Planning Building Overseer position, a senior police official confirmed that investigations were ongoing and awaiting a forensic report and system analysis as reported by PTI.

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